IOP parking restrictions lifted, Holiday Street Festival in jeopardy

Lowcountry Beaches

ISLE OF PALMS, S.C. (WCBD) – The Isle of Palms City Council on Tuesday approved Emergency Ordinance 2020-14, which extends the State of Emergency another 60 days, mandates face coverings for restaurants and retail establishments, and eliminates previous parking restrictions.

The unanimous approval removes restrictions put in place earlier in the summer that prevented non-residents from parking on certain streets, including on the land-side of Palm Boulevard, in an effort to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

With the arrival of cooler weather, members anticipate less crowding and therefore no longer see the need for the parking restrictions.

“The next spring and summer that if it’s still a consideration and an issue we would be recommending that council would consider putting these restrictions in place again,” says City Administrator Desiree Fragoso.

Members also discussed cancelling the upcoming Holiday Street Festival, due to increases in COVID-19 cases both locally and nationally.

Although recreation department staff tried to find ways to organize the festival in a socially-distanced way, most Councilmembers agreed it was prudent to cancel the event altogether in the interest of public health.

Councilmember Rusty Streetman summed up the group’s sentiment, saying “we don’t want to take a chance and be a super-spreader event.”

The group was, however, concerned about the impact that cancelling the festival would have on island businesses, namely restaurants, which have taken a massive hit due to COVID-19.

Some members pushed back, noting that other public events were successfully held in compliance with COVID-19 guidelines.

Click here to watch the full meeting.

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